Downeast Dog News

Ask Bammy

About Boss Thinking I Was Lost
Oct 01, 2020

I am a Carolina Dog, a breed that long ago owned Native American people. We were designed by natural selection to be so intelligent and physically superior that we survived without human help. My great-grandfather was caught from the wild. I can offer advice based on the natural instincts and attributes of wild dogs. In addition, my adopted person and I have had lots of training classes and other experiences. Some humans call themselves Mom or Dad of their dog, but I refer to my human, tongue in cheek, as Boss. Much as I love her, I admit she has many of the same odd notions as most humans, so I can relate to other dogs with problem humans. If I can’t help, at least I can offer sympathy, and we can have some fun talking about our amazing humans. Please send your questions! N. Holmes, 280 Pond Rd., Newcastle, ME 04553, or email:


Boss and I and our friend Joanie went for a walk a few days ago in a good place we know. There’s a big house and exciting dog and people and food smells around outdoor tables, but there were no people around. Odd. Mom and Joanie talked about “Courthouse,” but I don’t know what that means. There are wonderful trails that start at the house, so it’s a very good place to go.

When we got out of the car, I ran around fast to smell who had been there and to look for food crumbs. I could smell water, and I really wanted to swim and drink. We went down a path to a high bank above a wide, long water. But the bank was so high and so steep, it was almost straight down. While the humans walked along the path, I went around them in circles, the way good dogs do until I found a place where I could get down to the water.

I went down, alright! I couldn’t stop sliding, and the last four feet was just jumping straight down whether I wanted to or not. In two strides, I was swimming. So nice! After a while, I couldn’t hear my humans’ voices anymore, so I tried to go back up the bank. I jumped and jumped, but I couldn’t get a hold on the roots and loose dirt. I looked ahead and just saw more high, steep bank, so I ran back the way we came, looking for a way up. I hate not being with Boss to protect her, so I ran fast. Finally, all the way back by the big house, I found a way up from the beach. No sign of Boss and Joanie. The scent was blowing out of our footprints. I stood on the lawn for a moment, looking around and sniffing. Where were they? Then I took off on the path along the top of the bank, hoping they were still there.

Was I ever glad when I heard Boss call me from way, far along the path! I could hear fear in her voice, so I ran as fast as I could. Not that I was lost. I knew where I was, and I knew that my mighty nose would take me to her. But who knows what might happen to her if I wasn’t there to protect her? I like Joanie too, and I was glad they were together. They were excited to see me, as if they had been worrying, but I just gave them a casual wag. It took me so long to get back to them that I was almost dry, but Joanie saw that I had been swimming. So we all laughed, and we were happy again. But I stayed nice and close to them for the rest of the walk.

Of course I wasn’t scared, but a more domesticated dog might have been. There is a lesson here, my doggie readers. Before you go down, think about getting up again.

And remember to use your good nose,